Score That Dream Job by Acing Your Interview
All students think about working at their dream job after they graduate from college or vocational school. Unfortunately, few students think about the one critical aspect of getting their dream job: the hiring process.
You may have a college degree or even years of experience in your chosen career field, but that doesn’t mean you’re automatically going to get hired for the job that you’ve always wanted.
When it comes to the hiring process, most job applicants are not prepared for the interviews. If you want to have any chance of impressing a recruiter, you need to know what it takes to excel in an interview.
Everything from what you wear to the answers you provide will go a long way. In most cases, your interview performance will be just as important as the details on your resume.
For this reason, colleges are now offering short courses devoted to teaching students about how to prepare for job interviews. This doesn’t mean you need to take such a course, but it goes to show what an important skill interviewing has become.
To help you enhance your job interviewing skill, check out the following tips on how to properly prepare before you sit down with a potential employer.
Research the Company or Organisation
You might have applied to a lot of different companies, but if one of them calls you back to schedule an interview, then you better research that company ahead of time. Do not just walk into the interview with no knowledge about the organisation or what it does.
The interviewer is going to ask you if you’ve ever heard about the company. If you say no, then you have pretty much blown your chances at winning them over. Therefore, come prepared to answer questions about the company so that the employer knows you are a serious applicant who truly wants to work there.
Compare Your Skill Set to the Job Requirements
Employers look at dozens of resumes on a weekly or sometimes even a daily basis. They might skim over your resume and call you for an interview, but that doesn’t mean they know what your skills are.
If your skills do not meet the job requirements, then do not expect an interview to make the difference. You can save yourself and the employer time by comparing your particular skills to the skills required for the job.
Only apply to jobs where your skills match the required skills needed. This will ensure you have a fair chance of getting hired.
Anticipate Interview Questions and Prepare Possible Answers
A lot of employers will ask the same typical interview questions, such as, “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” or “Why do you feel that you’re right for the position?”
You should research standard interview questions and create answers for them ahead of time. Then just rehearse these answers to yourself so that you’ll be able to recite them during the interview. This will make you seem more confident in your responses.
Plan What to Wear
If you show up to the interview wearing jeans and a t-shirt, then you will never impress anyone. At the very least, you’ll want to wear business casual clothing, such as skirts, khaki pants, a collared shirt, etc., depending on the type of job it is.
But if you are going for some executive position, then suits, ties, and pantsuits might be more appropriate. The better you look, the better chance you’ll have of succeeding at the interview.
Plan What to Bring
Do not go to the interview empty-handed. Even if you emailed your resume, work portfolio, and references to the employer, the actual interviewer might not have them readily available. You should bring a folder with these documents in it just to be safe.
Practice Proper Etiquette
Your interview etiquette is essential. This shows the employer what your attitude and personality are like. If you can act polite and enthusiastic about the job, then it will go a long way in impressing the interviewer. If you are not the type of person who is happy and upbeat, try to fake it the best you can. And above all else, mind your manners.
Prepare Follow-up Questions
When an interviewer is done asking their questions, they will almost always ask if you have any questions. Do not just answer “No, I’m good.” You need to show the interviewer that you’ve been paying attention and have been seriously thinking about the job.
So, you need to prepare follow-up questions. Some of these questions might be, “What does it take to be successful in the organisation?” or “What is the culture like in the organisation?” Make the questions sound as if you’re already trying to fit into the company as a regular employee.
Know Your Destination and Arrive Early
This should be common sense, but some people might forget this. Make sure you know the address of the interview location and how to get there. With all the GPS technology available and the easy ability to obtain driving directions, you should not have a problem finding the location.
Just be sure to have the directions available beforehand and then arrive early on the day of the interview. Do not leave at the last minute because you don’t know what the traffic is going to be like. If you are late for the interview, then it will not go over well with prospective employers.
Be Aware of Nonverbal Communication
As important as it is to say the right words, your nonverbal communication is just as important. Things like smiling, eye contact, firm handshakes and sitting up straight are just some of the nonverbal skills that you need to possess. Every facial expression you give must be positive so that you appear pleasant.